The relation between the level of cellular adenine nucleotides and graft viability after cold preservation and warm ischemia was studied by using a rat small-bowel transplantation model. The rat jejunum was preserved in lactated Ringer's solution at 4°C for 120 min, and was then transplanted syngeneically under warm ischemia after between 60 and 180 min. The recovery levels of ATP and the energy charge at 30 min after reperfusion in the viable graft were significantly higher than those in the nonviable graft. None of the grafts were viable when the recovery level of ATP at 30 min after reperfusion was less than 2.8 μmol/g dry weight. These results suggest that the recovery level of ATP at 30 min after reperfusion is a reliable parameter for graft viability in small-bowel transplantation.
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